Synopsis

The Welkin

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Lucy Kirkwood

Published by Nick Hern Books

Large Mixed Cast
Rural Suffolk, 1759

As the country waits for the return of Halley's Comet, Sally Poppy is sentenced to hang for a heinous murder

When she claims to be pregnant, a jury of twelve matrons are taken from their housework to decide whether she's telling the truth, or simply trying to escape the noose

With only midwife Lizzy Luke prepared to defend the girl, and a mob baying for blood outside, the matrons wrestle with their new authority

And the devil in their midst ...

The Welkin premiered at the National Theatre, London, in January 2020

CAST
M3,F17

REVIEWS

'Brilliant, brave, bold and intelligent theatre. It is, for all the seriousness of its subject, often very funny yet at the close, profoundly moving' ~ WhatsOnStage

'Ungoverned, furious, larky, layered ... female dominated, 18th century jury-room drama ... brilliant... it fills the stage with wildly differing women and gives them agency .... I loved the sheer gutsy audacity of it all' ~ Evening Standard

'Thrilling ... Beautifully calibrated, tight as a high wire ... a gripping richly textured history play ... one of Kirkwood's most ambitious works to date' ~The Stage

'Dazzles with its examination of the big, immovable structures that inflict violence on women ... there is so much richness in its visual imagination' ~ Guardian

'A mighty play: magnificent in its scope, depth and intricacy ... a wise, funny, richly intelligent and generously ambitious play that asks, as all good history plays do, how far have we really come?' ~ Financial Times

'A superb new history play - a feminist courtroom drama that's equal parts Twelve Angry Men, The Crucible and The Vagina Monologues, plus a dash of searing, up-to-the-minute political and social commentary... a warm, humane and very funny piece, firmly anchored in women's everyday experience' ~ Broadway World

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